News, notes and analysis from Tom Cable’s weekly press briefing Monday, the day after a 20-13 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs:
– Cable again stressed “full responsibility” for the fake field goal attempt which resulted in a 67-yard touchdown for the Chiefs’ Maurice Leggett, but didn’t second-guess himself.
“I don’t regret it. I don’t think you can,” Cable said. “Otherwise I don’t think you make it in the first place. So there’s no sense in doing that.”
– The Raiders coach faced the music with no sense of emotion either way, undertanding he was in the line of fire because the play didn’t work.
“It worked every time (in practice), and that’s the shame of it all,” Cable said. “But it’s like I mentioned a few weeks ago, if you take a chance like that and it works, everybody thinks you’re a genius. When it doesn’t everyone wants to chew on your butt.
At the risk of biting off more than I can chew, you can’t compare the Janikowski fake to the one in which Jon Alston raced 22 yards as an upback against the Jets.
For one thing, Alston is a former high school running back, is extremely athletic and fast enough to have run down Reggie Bush while a linebacker/safety at Stanford. Janikowski is, well, Janikowski.
Another thing _ the Jets were better or equal to the Raiders, while the Chiefs most definitely were not. When the fake didn’t work against Kansas City, it provided life to the Chiefs.
– If the Janikowski fake worked every time the Raiders tried it during practice over the past two years, that doesn’t say much for whoever was playing the right edge during practice.
“Aw, man, Seabass got me again! C’mon coach, you’re killin’ us with that play!
– I realize I’m not looking at the play with a trained eye, but has anyone seen a replay that suggested that if Janikowski had caught the ball, he would have successfully run a good 17 yards (seven yards behind the line of scrimmage plust the 10 for the first down)?
Although he didn’t break out an overhead projector for purposes of demonstration, Cable apparently has.
When asked if Janikowski could have made the first down if the ball was handled cleanly, Cable said, “Yeah, because of the guy’s (Leggett’s) width, and that’s what we were counting on.”
– The recovery of veteran players such as Gerard Warren, Cornell Green and John Wade will be watched closely in practice as the Raiders must bounce back to play Thursday night in San Diego. Guard Cooper Carlisle, who left the game briefly with an ankle sprain, returned to finish the game and is expected to face the Chargers.
Players were not at the facility Monday, and will have a full day of practice Tuesday _ their usual day off. They have shorter practice Wednesday before departing for San Diego.
– Darren McFadden’s one-touch second half had a mostly to do with the Raiders inability to get off the field on defense, Cable said.
The Raiders had the ball for only 8:50 of the second half, with the Chiefs controlling it for 21:10.
“We really didn’t have the football in the second half,” Cable said. “Some of that was due to that, on the one-play, turnover series, we didn’t get any kind of rhythm in that second half where we could continue to do some of those things.”
It also could have played a hand in a young quarterback who was fell off badly in the second half in terms of accuracy. Russell was 3 of 13 for 29 yards.
“I think certainly when you’re young like that, you want the ball,” Cable said. “You want the ball. But for us, it’s when we get it, we have to do the right things with it, take care of it, move the ball, score points. So can that happen? Sure, it probably could. But you’d like to believe whenever we get it, we’ve got to take it and do the right thing.”
– The lost fumble by Justin Fargas was his first in 288 carries, dating back to last season’s game against the Chicago Bears at the Coliseum. Cable said there was no need to mention anything about the turnover to Fargas, who realized he was carrying the ball with his inside arm. (Fargas has fumbled but not lost possession).
“He carries the weight of this team on his shoulders,” Cable said. “He’s one of your bricks in your foundation. He’s the kind of guy that doesn’t say much, goes to work every day. He feels as bad as anybody today, so it’s not necessary.”
– The time of possesion issue hurt the offense in the second half, but Cable had no real quibble with the Raiders played defensively. Rob Ryan’s defense set up the only touchdown and gave up only 13 points.
“You always have to think about points allowed,” Cable said. “That’s what it is defensively. That’s how you evaluate your defense. They did a nice job that way. Obviously, you like to see them get out of a couple of those drives a little bit in terms of time of possession. But when you hold a team to that few of points, you have given your team a chance to win. That’s what you ask of them.”
– Cable on Lane Kiffin’s hiring at Tennessee: “He can move forward now. That’s what he should do and move to the next step in his career.”
– Cable said he talked to Al Davis, but didn’t reveal the substance of the conversation.
“We talked this morning. Like all of us he’s disappointed,” Cable said.“One thing he and I share is a tremendous passion for winning. Losing is about the worst thing in our lives. That’s what it
– Without anything in the standings to denote that the Raiders are officially out of the picture in terms of the playoffs, Cable is keeping that possibility open.
“We’re really not out of it. You keep having something to play for,” Cable said. “Everyone has had their issues. All four teams have had their issues in different ways, some it injuries, some of it just poor play. So we’re kind of all in this thing together and it’s just really whoever will sort it out best at the end.”
If that sounds possible, belly up to the Kool-aid bar and order a double.